Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Step into the Past with Rebecca DeMarino and Win

Welcome to another week at the Diamond Mine. Suzie here this week. I hope everyone is settling into their summer. This week, I'm excited to introduce you to Rebecca DeMarino, author of The Southold Chronicles. Stick around and find out how you can win all three paperbacks in the series.

Rebecca DeMarino writes inspirational historical romance and is the author of The Southold Chronicles (Revell). The three-book series is set in the 17th century on Long Island and is based on her real-life ninth great-grandparents who came from England on a little ship called The Swallow. Rebecca’s titles include A Place in His Heart (2014). To Capture Her Heart (2015), and To Follow Her Heart (2016). Rebecca inherited her love of baking and gardening from her mom, her love of horses and reading from her dad, and a wanderlust from both her parents!

For more information please visit her at and or tweet her @RebeccaDeMarino.

Suzie: Welcome, Rebecca. You've had a busy summer and we appreciate you stopping by today. I'm going to start with an easy question for you. Ballpoint, Uniball, or fountain pen?  

Rebecca: Uniball gel – I love how it flows!

Suzie: I'm a fan of the gel pens too. My favorite are the pilot G2 pens. Are you an early bird or a night owl?

Rebecca:  Definitely an early bird – much to my husband’s chagrin (who is not). I do my best writing in the wee hours of the morning.

Suzie: You’ve just been given a yacht. What do you name it?  

Rebecca: Writer’s Haven – because I’d want to do all my writing there!

Suzie: Oh, I like it!! Do you have any secret talents? 

Rebecca: I used to be able to ace spelling tests with my photographic memory, though I’m not certain it’s as sharp as it once was :)

Suzie: I'd blame that on technology :). Fill in the blank: Someday I want to ___________.

Rebecca: Reread all my favorite books in my library – I have over 1500! 

Suzie: I think that's something a lot of us can relate to whether it be re-reading or just getting through our TBR lists!! As an author, do you believe in writer’s block? 

Rebecca: Not that a good walk in the country can’t solve!

Suzie: Exercise is indeed good for both the brain and the body!! If you weren’t an author, what would you do for a living?  

Rebecca: In my dream-world I live on a ranch and raise Shires – descendants of the Great Black horses of old England.

Suzie: What place would you like to visit that you haven’t yet? 

Rebecca: Maybe Fiji, but the truth is, I’ve been to England twice and would go back in a minute!  

Suzie: I would visit England in a minute myself. It's on my bucket list. But if you're looking for surf and sand, Fiji would definitely fit that request! What literary character is most like you?  

Rebecca: Hmmm . . . maybe Mary Poppins because I always want to save a situation – but with Jesus as my umbrella and remembering that even when things don’t seem to be working out according to my plans, God has the big picture! BTW – have you seen the movie Saving Mr. Banks with Tom Hanks as Walt Disney and Emma Thompson as P.L. Travers? Great movie – and their portrayals perfect!

Suzie: It was a great movie! Let's switch gears and talk about your characters. Which of your characters is most like you? 

Rebecca: I would love to say Mary Horton – there’s a huge part of me in her (maybe because she’s my 9th great-grandmother!) but really she is made of much stronger stuff than me!

Suzie: Which character was the most difficult to write? 

Rebecca: Barnabas Horton. He is a Puritan who loves God and struggles after the death of his wife, whom he loved very much. But he has two little boys he loves very much as well, and must raise them. He weds Mary because he knows his children need a mother, but he can’t bring himself to love her.

Suzie: What is the craziest or most memorable thing you did in the name of research for your book(s)?

Rebecca:  I spent one whole day in a one-on-one cooking class with food historian Alice Ross on Long Island. She had a cooking studio with a 17th century hearth and we spent the entire day – from dawn to dusk - chopping wood, maintaining our fire, baking bread, and preparing and cooking meals just as they would in the 1600’s in which my series, The Southold Chronicles, is set. I wanted to feel to my core a day in the life of my heroine, Mary Horton – it was amazing!

Suzie: Wow, that sounds like hard work but a great experience! And I love the pictures!
Was there anything left out of the final draft that you would have liked to keep? 

Rebecca: The story itself remained intact – but my publisher cut the prologue, as they often do! But Revell did stylize it for me and I offer it on my website for free to those who sign up for my newsletter!

Suzie: Finally, what are you working on now?

Rebecca: I just completed my fourth novel, based on the real lives of Dolley and James Madison! I loved the research for that novel, which took me to Pennsylvania, Washington DC and the Library of Congress, James Madison’s Montpelier in Virginia, and the University of Virginia. I’ve made three trips to Montpelier, one of which was for a week where I participated in an archeology dig of the slave quarters on James Madison’s plantation. Talk about inspiring!

Suzie: Wow, sounds like readers have another fantastic read from Rebecca DeMarino ahead of them. Thank you for sharing a little bit of yourself, your characters, and your writing with us. 

Satisfying, Emotionally Rich Conclusion to The Southold Chronicles Series
It is 1664 and Patience Terry is devastated to learn that Captain Jeremy Horton's ship has been shipwrecked off the coast of Barbados, with no survivors. She had hoped that Jeremy would someday give up the sea and settle down with her in Southold, Long Island. 

Unaware his memorial service is being planned, Jeremy is rescued and aboard a British Naval Gunship with secret orders to attack New Amsterdam and claim it for the British Crown. When he makes his surprise return to Southold--and to an overjoyed Patience--it's not the happily-ever-after his beloved had hoped for. 

With a finely tuned sense for authentic historical characters and settings, Rebecca DeMarino plunges readers into the 17th century--a world of high seas and tall ships, daring journeys and yearning hearts.

Rebecca is graciously giving one reader all three books (paperback) of The Southold Chronicles. To enter, leave a comment here. You can say hi to Rebecca or just tell us what your summer vacation plans are (or where your dream vacation is if you're don't have one planned). Contest is valid only after five unique commentors. Winner will be drawn on Thursday, July 13, 2017.  You can get one bonus entry by following Rebecca on a social media platform or subscribing to her newsletter (be sure and come back here and let us know you did so).


Grammy Z to KT and Callie said...

Hello, Just a quick note to let you know I've subscribed to Rebecca's newsletter and followed Her on Facebook. I'm so thrilled to have found her book, "To Follow Her Heart" because the Reverend John Youngs from the books is my 10th great grandfather and I've learned about the kind of man he was. In fact, the day I found I was related to the Reverend, I found Rebecca's book at my library. I was shocked to see my ancestor written about. I'd love to have the whole set and read the previous two books, which my library does not have.

Trixi said...

Hi Rebecca!! I don't have summer plans. We live on the Oregon coast and my husband works at a motel so this is our VERY busy season! Nobody takes vacation during the summer. That's ok, because we'd rather go during the off season where there's less people, things are less expensive and quieter. This will probably sound odd to you, but for those of us living in a coastal small town, we go AWAY from the beach :-)

I do, however, love to go visit my sister-in-law in Kent WA whenever I can (about 4hr drive). I usually leave very early in the morning to get up there and avoid a lot of traffic during the later hours of the afternoon. I love the drive and the time spent with her :-)

Thank you for the chance to win all three of your books! I've heard so much good about them :-) I follow Rebecca via newsletter, Facebook and Twitter.

Patty said...

My dream vacation would be more along the surf and sands lines. My husband and I are headed to Hilton Head Island for a few days at the end of the month!

I follow Rebecca on FB.

Rebecca DeMarino said...

Wow Grammy! I think this means we are somewhat distant cousins because the Youngs and Horton offspring married! Glad you found TFHH at the library! Good luck with the contest!

Rebecca DeMarino said...

Isn't it true no matter where we live we want to "get away"! Thank you for following me, and much luck with the contest!

Diane Estrella said...

Look at that beautiful bread. It incredible. I'm sure it smelled wonderful! thank you for the awesome giveaway. I follow on FB.'
dianemestrella at gmail dot com

Rebecca DeMarino said...

I love the Carolina beaches! My favorite get-away is to Duck on the Outer Banks! Thanks for the follow and good luck with the contest!

Library Lady said...

My ultimate dream vacation is going to the beach.
Unfortunately, I won't be going this year.
Thanks for entering me in your giveaway.
Janet E.

Sydney Anderson said...

This summer we spent a day at the beach in Cali. But mostly we will be staying close to home so we can hang out with our families.

Sydney @Singing Librarian Books
singinglibrarianbooks [at] gmail [dot] com

Rebecca DeMarino said...

Janet - I do love the beach, too! And the nice thing about books is they can take us anywhere we'd like to be! And Sydney - hanging out with the family is sooo important and not enough time for that it seems in our busy lives! Glad you're making the time! Good luck to you both with the contest!!

Suzie Waltner said...

Grammy Z - How wonderful to find a book about someone in your family tree. Did you know that was the inspiration for Rebecca's books? You two are probably distant relatives!

Trixi-Oh, Kent, WA. I know it well. My sister lives in Olympia and my parents are in Walla Walla. My brother is in a different state but only a couple miles from the WA border over in Moscow, ID. Alas, I'm in Nashville and my trip to visit family requires an airplane :)

Patty - I've not yet been to the Carolina beaches but they are on my bucket list. Kind of funny considering I'm not too far away in Tennessee.

Diane - That bread does look delicious, doesn't it?

Janet - A lot of people enjoy the beach. The trick is finding a quiet one that's not crowded (so not Panama City during spring break, lol).

Sydney - Family time is always enjoyable. I get to visit mine next month. What I love about hanging with my family is that it's a relaxing time. No one feels like we have to be going all the time. We visit, play cards, play with the kids, and just enjoy the days without an agenda.

Grammy Z to KT and Callie said...

Rebecca DeMarino- I'm so glad I found your books, your site and your Facebook pages! I would love to read the first two books in the series. Also thank you for posting photos from England and Southold! I'm sharing them with my father, JOHN YOUNG! To learn that we are related (cousins, it seems) by marriage was the icing on the cake! So good to meet you!

Suzie Waltner- It was really great to find that Rebecca had included my great grandfather in her books. It seems that he was one of the founders of Southold, Long Island. I didn't know Rebecca had written the books until I did a search for any books that may have been written about Southold on our local library site and then to learn that we are related (cousins, it seems) by marriage was the icing on the cake!

Debbie Clatterbuck said...

Since I've never been on a vacation as an adult, I would love to go to some tropical island and relax by the blue waters of the ocean. princessdebbie1_2000(at)yahoo(dot)com

Suzie Waltner said...

Debbie--Some days a tropical island without all of the hustle and bustle and crowds sounds like the perfect getaway! I think you deserve that vacation!

Caryl Kane said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Caryl Kane said...

Hello Rebecca! I plan to catch up on my series reading while staying out of the Texas heat! I don't go on vacation, but I would love to visit my friends in Colorado Springs, CO.

I subscribe to Rebecca's newsletter and follow on Facebook.

psalm103and138 at gmail dot com

Paula Shreckhise said...

I love historicals! These seem so inviting. Would love to win them. If not-- I'll try to request the library purchase them. I'm going to follow you on Facebook and sign up for your newsletter! Blessings.

Jennifer Hibdon said...

I am so wanting to read these booked!!! Thanx for the giveaway!!! My sisters, cousins and I do genealogy. I would love to write about some of the family characters we have found. We have not discovered anyone living is Long Island, but a cousin discovered 4 relatives on the Mayflower with several coming on later Puritan ships! I am working on DAR lineage for applications. Isn't it fun playing with the dead relatives?

Suzie Waltner said...

Thank you to everyone who stopped by to visit the Diamond Mine this week. The winner of a set of the Southold Chronicles chosen by is Jennifer H. Congrats.

Rebecca DeMarino said...

I enjoyed so much being here on the Diamond Mine and reading all of your comments! Thank you, Suzie, for having me! And congratulations to Jennifer for winning The Southold Chronicles series!! I've been tending a very sick father, but I am packaging up your books and will have them on their way soon! Much love to you all! Rebecca

Rebecca DeMarino said...

And yes, Jennifer - it IS so much fun - and I love discovering the past, especially when I find my own connection! I'm a member of the DAR - love their purpose and mission to preserve the past by educating today! Rebecca